Durban III – Julie Bishop Declares it a No Go

August 17, 2011 by J-Wire Staff
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Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Julie Bishop has called for Australia to withdraw from the Durban III Conference.

Dr Danny Lamm and Julie Bishop

The Conference, to be held in New York on September 21, has been heavily criticised for promoting racism rather than combating it.

In her statement, Julie Bishop said:

“The acting Minister for Foreign Affairs Craig Emerson should immediately announce Australia’s withdrawal from the upcoming Durban III conference in New York next month.

This will be the third time this event, officially titled the “United Nations World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance”, will be held including the inaugural event at Durban in South Africa in 2001.

There is no excuse for delaying the announcement that Australia will boycott this event, after the first two conferences were used as a platform for anti-Israel tirades and overt antisemitism.

Delegates from Australia, the United States, Israel and other nations walked out in protest at the inaugural conference in Durban in 2001.

The second conference in Geneva in 2009 included a keynote address by Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who gave his trademark speech attacking Israel.

Australia did boycott that event but the Labor government announced its withdrawal only hours before it began, which was too late for a delegation of Australian human rights representatives who had already travelled to Geneva.

This put that delegation in a difficult position of attending a conference boycotted by the Australian government.

Durban III is ostensibly to be a commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the first conference, and appears to be on track to repeat its failures.

President Ahmadinejad has already confirmed that he will be one of the keynote speakers and his past performance provides no shortage of material as to what can be expected.

The United States, Canada, Israel, Czech Republic, Italy and The Netherlands have already announced they will not be attending Durban III.”

President of The Executive Council of Australian Jewry, Dr Danny Lamm, told J-Wire: “Australia should be declaring its refusal to attend this sham international conference. Instead of waiting to the last minute as it did with Durban II, Australia should be setting an example right now.”

The Acting Minister for Trade, Craig Emerson, responded to Julie Bishop’s call. He told J-Wire: “Australia is a strong international advocate against racial and religious intolerance and condemns racism, racial discrimination and xenophobia in all their forms. Australia is carefully monitoring developments in the lead up to the High Level Meeting on the Durban Declaration and Program of Action on 22 September and will make a decision on attendance in coming weeks.”


3 Responses to “Durban III – Julie Bishop Declares it a No Go”
  1. Kim says:

    If Madman Imadinnerjacket (aka Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) is going to speak at the conference Australia should boycott Durban III because clearly if he is being asked to speak as a key speaker then we all know how this Durban conference will turn out.

    At least we know now that the Liberal Party is quicker at making important decisions than Labor.

  2. Rita says:

    Kudos to Julie Bishop!

    As to Labor who seems to dance to the tune played by the Greens, what do you think are the chances that they will do the right thing…pretty close to zero if the very stridently anti-Israel Lee Rhiannon has any say in it, if you ask me.

  3. Neil says:

    What a load of BS.

    There are two mentions of Israel in the preamble to the conference.
    63. We are concerned about the plight of the Palestinian people under foreign
    occupation. We recognize the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to self-determination
    and to the establishment of an independent State and we recognize the right to security for all
    States in the region, including Israel, and call upon all States to support the peace process and
    bring it to an early conclusion;

    151. As for the situation in the Middle East, calls for the end of violence and the swift
    resumption of negotiations, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law, respect
    for the principle of self-determination and the end of all suffering, thus allowing Israel and the
    Palestinians to resume the peace process, and to develop and prosper in security and freedom;

    “recognize the right to security for all States in the region, including Israel” and “allowing Israel and the
    Palestinians to resume the peace process”.

    Who is buying this womans lunch? . .

    Best Wishes

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